Forgive them Father for they know not what they don’t.
They don’t report the news that matters, they report the news that sells.
Kagan Research, the media research firm, projected that the four cable news channels would earn $699 million in pre-tax profits in 2006. That would represent a jump of 32% from 2005, when they generated $529 million.
This is the first challenge of taking on the media, what they do is making money…so why should they change?
Before cable, TV news divisions were expected to lose money. It was considered part of their responsibility to the public, for using the public airwaves, to make a profit on their other programming.
The came Reagan and Gordon Gecco. Then came cable, the came the internet.
The NYTimes just got rid of a hundred people, journalism without sensationalism isn’t profitable.
AMY GOODMAN: Why do you think these candidates, the leading candidates of the Democratic supposedly opposition party, do not call for an immediate end to the war, do not call for single-payer healthcare?
BILL MOYERS: Because the media doesn’t allow complicated thought to be articulated in ways that enlighten instead of misinform people.
(h/t to pattisigh
Sensation-alism does not allow for nuance, or real reporting or telling a story. It especially does not allow for the key to the power of the press in affecting politics…..following up. There is no money in following up, in researching a story, in sticking with a story, in presenting anything in depth. The surface is all that is presented.
The Net provides that, but as someone (JimP?) once very wisely observed, the Net is a “pull” medium and TV is a “push” medium. You have to pull the Net into your home, TV is pushed into your home. And in many households and businesses is always on, is pushed at you. So most people get their news from TV. So most people get the most shallow and sensationalistic version of the news.
The worst of the worst wish to create sensationalism, as “grist for the mill,” as product.
Challenge number one in the media war: Convincing the current media that real journalism, real reporting, real news can be profitable. Iow, as in the greatest press success (for our purposes)of recent history… follow the money. Or in this case…lead it.
Or at a minimum, convincing them that presenting the news, as Olbermann does, in combination with sensationalism (first half hour news, second half hour gossip, features and nonsense…is profitable. Iow, convicing them that real news IS what the public wants.